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P.S Thanks Rebecca for your kind words
Hi Christy.. interesting to read your comments about the great luthier Derrick Nelson.. My two guitars are currently in the service shop at Hughes of Blackrock.. some refretting on the Walden and pick up issues on the Lowden.. hope to have ’em back by this weekend rid of any buzz or unwanted distortion..”..his hands were gentle, and his hands were strong..”
Thinking about your Taks.
Two workhorses heavily shod.
I’d love to hear you sing with the Gibson sometime, you describe it so beautifully.
I was so glad to hear that Andy Irvine miraculously got his lost instruments back. I’d be lost without my harp.
Talking to Mark Norris the harp maker. He needs to source some titanium tuning pins for the new harps he’s making, mine included. They used to be made by Teifi, who made the one I’m playing now, but they’ve gone out of business. Bloody brexit!
I’m fiddling my way round House of the Rising Sun.
It’s written in a mode called Aeolian, which is what happens when you play a scale on the piano of all white notes starting on A. Kind of like minor but smoother. Love the sound it makes. There’s lots of songs in this mode.
There are some footnotes to the song on Joni Mitchell’s website
Footnotes to House of the Rising Sun
This song was said to have been known by miners as early as 1905. The oldest published version of the lyrics is that printed by Robert Winslow Gordon in 1925, in a column “Old Songs That Men Have Sung” in Adventure magazine. The oldest known recording of the song, under the title “Rising Sun Blues”, is by Appalachian artists Clarence “Tom” Ashley and Gwen Foster, who recorded it on September 6, 1933 on the Vocalion label
I love all this stuff. Going to see if I can track any of it down.
She sings it to such a lovely tune.
Christy, your comments ref’ the Cuban revolution brought back some memories. In the early 2000’s. I was on holiday in Havana and read in the local papers that Fidel Castro had just had a new book published. I decided to write to him asking if the book would be made available outside Cuba (but not really expecting a reply). About three months after returning home a letter from Cuba popped through the letter box, like an excited school boy I tore it open only to discover (not suprisingley) that it was wrieen in Spanish so I couldnt understand a word, but what I could make out was Castros signature on the bottom .I eventually managed to get the letter translated which thanked me for my letter and asked fo my support for the Cuban 5, who were at the time imprisoned in America but eventually released. The letter is still in my box of’ ‘treasured possessions’ which also includes my ticket stub from the Live Aid concert, the autograph of the famous Sligo Rovers footballer, Dixi Dean and my first home made birthday/fathers day cards from my (now) 30 year old children. No pasaran John
What a great experience you describe….
We went to Cuba for 3 weeks way back in the 80s…it was a wonderful experience..many memories linger
Well Christy, I had a few hours work ahead of me, getting the main crop spuds in. The earlies are already in the cool cellar and providing many a grand dinner for us. Anyway, I brought you along for company, on my iPod. Old technology but does me fine. I noted I have 95 of your songs in there, still have a few of my CDs to upload. So hacking, gathering, and singing along. Until I heard Weekend in Amsterdam. I was really struck by the audience reaction. It seemed to my ear as if that was the first time they heard it, the reactions to the jokes and funny bits. Fresh laughter. So down with the hacker, and a wee look. The version I was listening to is from On the Road, disk 1. And I wondered where it was recorded, and if that was really Amsterdam’s first outing? Sleeve notes are grand, but haven’t these details for Amsterdam. I knew One Voice wouldn’t have it, a later recording. Hence my thinking about One Voice, More Songs!
Anyway, further info very welcome. Mind yourself.
Good Man Pat,
I like to reflect, to remember, to scribble odd bits here and there, its a pleasureable practice, a few people like yourself give feedback, its a sort of an ongoing friendly sharing about the songs, the work, the writers, the listeners… I cherish it
“One Voice” came about at a time when I was unable to gig, work, travel or communicate…I spent 18 months with little else to do but write the words that became the book you mention….even the format was not planned out ,it just happened….I made out a list of songs and began to reflect upon them…Rowena Webb of Hodder & Stoughton then offered guide lines and it all began to take shape….
23 years later I am fully occupied with songs, gigs, recordings and all ancillary activities that don’t allow me the time to get stuck into another Book…but if and when the time comes again…I’ll surely “go at it agin”
hope your spuds are floury..catch you later
Kicking myself for missing Fidel Castro’s 96th birthday date on saturday past.
Love the song Companeros from your This is the Day album, an album i recall buying in a record shop in Aberdeen.
Great song, great album.
You remind me of a time ,back in the late 1969s. I met a few pockets of people who were deeply immersed in the progress of the Cuban Revolution. There was a campaign in the Morning Star newspaper seeking to support that ongoing struggle. I came across these good people in various Folk clubs. The initiative was named after the boat Granma that carried Fidel and his small Band of Volunteers to Cuba..The Granma also became the title of the Daily Paper that supported Fidel..
later I heard Ewan’s song
” The good ship Granma lies at anchor in the harbour
waiting for the evening tide to bring high water”
thinking that Ewan’s opening line was not explanatory I adjusted it to
“Fidel and Che Guevara lay on a ship at anchor in the Harbour
waiting for the evening tide to bring high water”
Needless to say , a few Mudcats were apoplectic…. a response that always delights
I love this song…it was a great privilige to sing it on Ewan MacColl’s Tribute Album..”Joy of Living” COOKCD624……(I do retain a slight regret in that the Family asked me to sing “Green Island”…I opted for “The Good Ship Granma” ( aka Companeros)… I sometimes think that I should have respected their request
“The Island lies like a leaf upon the Sea
Green Island,like a leaf new fallen from the tree”
Kevin, I’ve been meaning to say. I loved your recording of Bright Blue Rose from that wedding you sang at.
Every day as I finish work (and often before..) I listen to things. Last night it was Joni Mitchell Ladies of the Canyon, Flying into Mystery and the Liam O’Flynn album that’s called Liam O’Flynn.
What a brilliant set of 3 albums.
It fell upon a holy day as manys in the year
Musgrave to the church did go to see fine ladies there
Working from home for the last couple of years has been good for me. I get to sing and play instead of wasting time sitting on a bus. It’s good to let the mind wander but it’s better to be doing some solid work.
Lie still lie still me Little Musgrave and hug me from the cold
It’s nothing bit a shepherd lad a’bringing his flock to fold
I love that song.
Your work sounds to be going well.
How are you and the Gibson getting on?
I sometimes reflect upon the privilige of the senses
I think of those who might be tone deaf, colour blind, taste less,
or those of us unfortunates numbed by illness or addiction..
I had some restorative work done on the Gibson..I pick it up a few time a day..its beautiful on the soft finger picking songs…dont know yet if it will work at gigs but it will certainly record well…Derek Nelson at Danvel takes great care of my guitars.. services and restores them lovingly ..they neither rattle nor hum..I sometimes give them dogs abuse hammering the bejasus out of them when in Barrowland or some such tower of song
Having secured a couple of tickets to bring my ypungest to Belfast to see your gig, it got me wondering how your young Andy is getting on?
His appearances in your lockdpwn videos and on a live screening gave us a glimpse of his talent, i hope he is well and is able to get a chance to use his ability should he so choose.
Families are our life afirming gift to the world, my grandchildren are just that and bring so much joy.
Sister sledge, the handsome family, clive dunne as grandad or the furey brothers etc reveal that we all enjoy family music , so good luck to andy ehatever he is up to.
Thanks for asking Rory,
our Andy is tippin along nicely Thanks Be….he has recently opened up his “Tin Can Coffee” van in Sallynoggin,Co Dublin and is gaining great support from citizens,friends and family.. Himself and myself have occasional song sessions here..I love singing with him
Latin Mass eh? Yes I was a holy alter boy who parroted my Latin responses to Father Tom Scanlon at St. Augustine’s church Maryborough.
He was a fierce Irishman who carried a shillelagh & kept us all in check…
Later, when teenage hit me & the hair grew long he was heard to remark of me: “Who’s that boy with the mat on his head?”
These were days when we enthusiastically belted out “Faith of our Fathers” with its threatening lyrics of “in spite of dungeon, fire & sword” & gently crooned “Hail Queen of Heaven, the Ocean Star”. (Good name for a seaside pub).
Still bashing your songs Christy – still enjoying them immensely.
Danny Harris – recovering Catholic
Alter boys chatter brought be back.. standing at the side door in our Cathedral holding the oil filled candle, waiting for a remains to be carried in one winters evening. Then came the time… the coffin held shoulder high, the nod to move forward toward the alter… the candle dropped!..oil spilled all over the floor and a gong from the candle base that near woke the poor cratur in the coffin!.. I soon learned the meaning of the word mortified. At that I decided to call it a day.. Oh Kyrie eleison…
Have you got any new songs brewing? It’s always exciting to meet new friends.
My list gets longer and longer.
House of the Rising Sun
Dark Eyed Sailor
One of these days I’m going to crack Ride On.
Steve’s drones are coming on a treat. It’s a fabulous noise. I’ve heard rumours about regulators. He says the hardest thing is not touching them by mistake.
And the octopus won…
Its a brand new week and I’m looking forward to seeing the pics from the gig. The camera was pretty much shoved up my nose.
working away here like Billy O
hardly had time to wash my face in the last week
You have me there Christy re Reggie. I was “done” in 1953 and confo. was every 3 years then, so ye were probably in the next batch. Dr. Keogh did the job with Paddy Mansfield supplying the tip on the shoulder. Do remember sinking a large bottle of Taylor Keith down the river on the day and paying the penalty later. Did manage to keep the pledge until the honeymoon.
Begob, all this Latin. One first year class when I started First Year, they did Latin and they bore the scars for trying to take it all in. They told me I wouldnt like it. After not learning it serving mass I’m bereft for not learning this language.
Do you need Facebook to access the Boyle plaque ceremony? I dont think so. Nice pictures. I love the progession from altar serving to ‘swinging’ and ‘swingers’.
Thanks to hilary, i dont do faceslap but i did click and the link works…just in time to see yer man catch the falling curtain.
Boyle has done itself proud again in keeping the flame with their plaques.
Now i wonder are you going for a plaque, a bust, a life-size statue or an over-sized inflatable ?
We have had the stamp so maybe next is the coin, the ship or the planet in your honour, your honour.
I attach more importance to the silent honours…
Those without Big Sponsors or PR machines, (not forgetting Doctorates in nothingness)
I value Honours like:
Getting the Song “Green Island ” from Ewan MacColl
Meeting The Clancy Brothers,&Tom Clancy asking me to sing”John O’Dreams”
Paddy Clancy coming to hear me in Arklow
Liam Clancy coming to hear me in Whitechurch
Maggie Barry calling me up to sing “The Wild Colonial Boy” in Willesden Junction
Singing with Jackson Browne in Millstreet
Singing with Michéal Ó Súilleabhain
Singing for Paddy Hill in Barrowland
Singing for Paul Hill and Gerry Conlon in Dominion,London
Lisdoonvarna in the Penguin Book of Irish Poetry..
Being invited to sing at Martin McGuinness’s Funeral
Getting a letter of encouragement from Pete Seeger
Invited to Sing for Kildare Women before All-Ireland Victory
Invited to Sing for the Kildare Men before losing a Leinster Final
Invited to Sing (13 times) for the Ireland Rugby Squad
Invited to Sing for the Leinster Rugby Squad
Invited to Sing for every Irish President since Paddy Hillery
Invited to sing in (almost) every Irish Prison
Singing with Willie Clancy in Miltown Malbay in 1965 (Liverpool Lou)
Ber Murphy’s sister thanking me for including Ber in a song
Making and album with Dominic Behan in 1968
..these are a few of the honours bestowed over the last 56 years
You’d look great in a biretta Christy, and you obviously have the lingo. Laudamus te.
do you remember the day Reggie Mooney was confirmed by the Bishop of Kildare and Leighlin ?..
never mind the Biretta Frankie..what about a Beret and a pair of Sunglasses
Hi..here is a link to photos on Facebook of the unveiling of the plaque to the Grehan Sisters in Boyle recently https://www.facebook.com/groups/281588101953786/permalink/5318847661561113/ Carpe Diem i gconai, beir bua agus beannacht .H
damn it..I don’t do face book personally so I dont get to see it
Quem pastores laudavere,
Quibus angeli dixere,
Absit vobis jam timere,
Natus est rex gloriae.
It’s usually Dave who tells us about the forthcoming joys reported to us by Hotpress. But, as he’s not writing right now I thought I’d mention this treasure that will be out on 23rd September.
A remastered album of Patrick Kavanagh reading his own poems, plus some great new recordings of poems read by lots of different people, including our own dear Christy interspersed with music.
It’s bringing to mind The Poet and the Piper.
I’m looking forward to hearing it.
I spent time in my youth, and later, singing in Latin. Didn’t really understand it but it feels nice to sing.
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